Link to Chris’s TEDx talk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uOJijhYK2Bc
London – Jan 8, 2024 – In an era marked by rapid change, increasing complexity, and unprecedented disruption, the need to adapt and thrive has never been more crucial. Renowned behavioural scientist and professional futurist, Chris Marshall, is on a mission to redefine how we approach challenges and navigate turbulent times. In his recent TEDx talk, ‘How to thrive in times of disruption: the playfulness principle,’ delivered on November 2, 2023, Marshall introduced the concept of embracing playfulness as a key to unlocking our potential in the face of uncertainty.
Marshall’s talk focused on dispelling the outdated cultural norm of “stressed and seriousness.” He highlighted the shift from the innate playfulness of childhood to the stifling of playfulness in adulthood due to societal pressures and workplace demands. As the founder of the Pause Play Move (PPM) Method, Marshall provides entrepreneurs with the skills needed to scale faster, be more creative, and avoid burnout in a fast-paced world.
The core message of Marshall’s TEDx talk revolves around the transformative power of playfulness. Cultivating a playful mind-set can lead to higher levels of curiosity, creativity, collaboration, and lower levels of burnout, toxic workplaces, and stress. Marshall’s insights reveal that playfulness is not about frivolity but about reducing overload, diminishing anxiety, and fostering creativity.
Drawing from his own experiences and the stories of renowned explorers and adventurers, Marshall emphasises the importance of approaching challenges with an insatiable sense of curiosity. He shared how this approach, instilled in him by his mother, shaped his journey to becoming a professional futurist.
“Today, the world stands at a pivotal moment,” Marshall stated during his talk. He pointed out that we are facing unprecedented changes and disruptions, dwarfing even the Industrial Revolution in magnitude. In such an environment, the traditional approach of pushing through with unlimited willpower is not sustainable.
Marshall highlighted the relevance of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s leadership during the perilous Antarctic expedition as an example of the power of playfulness. Shackleton sought crew members who could navigate uncertain, relentless conditions with playfulness, reframing challenges as opportunities.
To help individuals embrace playfulness in their daily lives, Marshall introduced the “10min playfulness challenge.” This challenge encourages individuals to dedicate just 10 minutes of their working day to doing something playful. The specific task is not important; what matters is breaking free from the confines of the usual routine.
As Marshall encouraged his audience, “Give yourself permission to experiment, to play, to colour outside the lines, or think well beyond the normal boundaries.” The result, he promises, is a shift in energy, perspective, and an unlocking of inherent playfulness.
Marshall concluded his talk by underscoring that playfulness is the key to thriving in turbulent times. As we embrace playfulness, we can reframe situations, maintain a sense of curiosity, and navigate challenges with optimism.
With the impending release of his TEDx talk online, the world is about to gain access to a powerful message of hope and transformation through the Playfulness Principle. Marshall’s work serves as a reminder that, in the face of disruption, playfulness is not a luxury but a necessity for personal and professional growth. You can watch the full video here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uOJijhYK2Bc